Disclaimer: This was a post written in May 2014 when the social slip-up happened as the NHL post-season was about to begin. Even with this being dated, it’s still a great example of what NOT to do.
As social media managers we try to be on top of EVERYTHING going on in our own specific social realm. Sports is a fast moving category that really drives a lot of social content. One piece of our strategy consists of ensuring we’re caught up on our former athletes on professional teams or any alumni who takes part in the professional sports landscape (shout out to all of them) and use them for content.
This past week the Colorado Avalanche were headed to the NHL playoffs for the first time since 2010. Colorado State doesn’t have a former athlete on the team but nonetheless, we’re proud residents of the state of Colorado wished them good luck.
— CSU Rams (@CSUAthletics) April 30, 2014
The good luck tweet had some traction with retweets by some Denver media outlets and fans that didn’t follow our account, but there was one thing I failed to realize… we DO have a hockey team, several actually, and boy oh boy, we heard about it (this is the MILD feedback).
— CSU Sport Clubs (@CSUSportClubs) May 1, 2014
@CSUAthletics u should probably give credit where credit is due. CSU's hockey teams have some of the best overall records in school history
— Sawyer Stinchfield (@stinchfield9) May 1, 2014
Something I failed to realize while concocting this tweet is the fact we have several hockey teams. These specific teams don’t fall under the NCAA DI umbrella (what CSU Athletics covers, promotes, markets) but are instead are a piece of Campus Recreation. With that being said, I messed this one up.
This was a real life social lesson for me. In discussions with folks around the office, a tidbit was brought up by one of our seasoned Media Relations vets: “don’t get too cute.” Sometimes the best thing to do is the simplest thing to do, in this case “Good Luck Avs” would have sufficed. Universities are very big places with lots of departments, units, teams, clubs, committees, etc. and when you have some good content, which we felt this was, make sure you’re keeping in mind the broad spectrum of what is happening at your university.